In today’s NHL rumors rundown, J.T. Miller speaks about his negotiations with the Vancouver Canucks and the likelihood the team trades him. Meanwhile, was part of the reason Alex DeBrincat got traded because he wasn’t willing to sign long-term with the Chicago Blackhawks? Could the Boston Bruins and Calgary Flames be talking about a trade that would see an old Bruin return? Finally, why aren’t the New York Islanders likely to trade Josh Bailey, despite rumors he’d be the player to go if Nazem Kadri signs?
Miller Talks About Possible Canucks Extension
While a guest on John Scott’s Dropping the Gloves Podcast, J.T. Miller spoke about the rumors regarding a possible trade and what’s out there in respect to negotiations with the Canucks. He said that a good chunk of the information on the Internet isn’t accurate and stated, “…we’re not as close as we’d like to be.” He added, “I want to be in Vancouver. It’s all I can tell you, I hope it works out but at the same time, it’s a business from my side and their side and I think they understand that. I certainly understand that too.”
Miller said it will be hard to focus on his job as a player with the pending negotiations hanging over him during the season if something isn’t resolved. He wants to help the team win and get into the playoffs (which he thinks they can do), but he explained:
It’s definitely going to be next to impossible to not be a 100 percent focused on the task when you have your livelihood and career on the line. It’s gonna seem like a nightly basis, especially in Vancouver if I don’t score the first game of the year, they’re gonna want to light my jersey on fire, you know what I mean.
DeBrincat Wouldn’t Commit to Blackhawks
While Alex DeBrincat did say publicly that he wanted to be in Chicago before he was traded to the Ottawa Senators, in his latest mailbag column, Scott Powers of The Athletic reports that DeBrincat didn’t show interest in signing a long-term deal with the Blackhawks. That was part of the reason the team was willing to deal him.
DeBrincat would have been eligible to sign an extension as early as July 13th but Powers adds:
The fact that DeBrincat still doesn’t have an extension with the Senators speaks volumes, too. I would think he’d already have one finalized if that’s where he was convinced he wanted to remain.source – ‘Blackhawks mailbag, part 2: There’s a logical choice to replace Eddie Olczyk’ – Soctt Powers – The Athletic – 08/11/2022
If and when the Senators start negotiating with DeBrincat, his number on a long-term deal is going to start around the $9 million mark. That was the qualifying offer number he is owed next summer and since he’s coming off of his second 41-goal campaign over the last four years, it’s likely he gets more than that.
Could the Flames Trade Lucic to the Bruins?
Steve Macfarlane of Calgary Hockey Now discussed the rumors of Flames winger Milan Lucic being traded to the Boston Bruins after Patrice Bergeron and David Krejci signed one-year extensions with the team. The idea of getting the band back together was trending on social media, but Macfarlane doesn’t think the Flames have any real desire to move the 34-year-old power forward unless they’re planning on making another big trade that requires them to take on a bigger salary.
Islanders Unlikely to Trade Josh Bailey
The Athletic’s Kevin Kurz pointed out that it’s unlikely the New York Islanders trade Josh Bailey in an effort to clear cap space for Nazem Kadri. Kurz’s argument is that if there was a deal of this kind in place, it would have already happened by now since most NHL rosters are set and there are very few teams who could/would easily add Bailey’s $5 million cap hit to their roster.
Considering the Islanders would need to retain salary and that Bailey is signed through the 2023-24 season, a trade is even less likely since it leaves the Islanders with dead cap space that Lou Lamoriello wouldn’t be thrilled about. Kurz also noted:
There’s also the matter of what I reported earlier this summer, that Bailey wasn’t on the block before the draft. Perhaps that has changed if they have acquired Kadri, but as we all know, that’s still an if at this point.source – ‘Would Mathew Barzal produce more on the wing? Should Islanders sign Sonny Milano? Mailbag’ – Kevin Kurz – The Athletic – 08/10/2022